EU cracking down on card payment fees

BRUSSELS (AP) — The European Union’s Commission is proposing legislation to cap some credit and debit card fees.

The 28-nation bloc’s executive arm says limiting the fees paid by retailers to banks every time a consumer uses a card will result in annual savings of 6 billion euros ($7.9 billion) and lead to lower prices.

The so-called interchange fees would be capped at 0.2 percent of a transaction’s value for debit cards and 0.3 percent for credit cards. The proposal still needs approval by the European Parliament and member countries.

Mastercard Inc. has warned the cap could lead to higher card fees for consumers, but EU Commissioner Michel Barnier dismissed that as an “unbearable campaign” of disinformation.

Separately, the Commission, as the EU’s competition watchdog, is investigating fees charged by Mastercard and Visa.

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